Note from the Editor – Bocuma joins us as our first guest writer on All The Machines with an incredibly well thought out 3 part series delving deep into the inspiration behind his latest album, Orphans of the Sky. This critically acclaimed (See here, here, and here) album out of Ireland, from our friends at Party Time Society, is quite the journey to an alternate dimension of sound. Here he explains how he found the path to this sonic masterpiece. Read part 1 here, and part 2 here.
Influencing the Orphans of the Sky
Inspiration is a funny and strange thing. Producing electronic music of a downtempo/IDM style you would automatically think I have my ear stuck to the latest Aphex Twin, BoC or Clark release trying to steal (sorry – I mean get inspiration) from for my own album. This is far from the truth. For my latest release, Orphans of the Sky, I wanted to have more fun than my previous albums. Keep it more upbeat but still soaked in nostalgia and with a sci-fi retro futurism feel, so like most people I ended up finding inspiration in a less than obvious place.
Yes, of course we all listen to who we admire and respect in our own relevant genre, but to find a source that makes you want to produce something a little different and make sure we have our own personal touch I think we all have our own little stash of albums that we go to when we need to find that spark to get us going.
The Running Man – Harold Faltermeyer
Aw poor Harold Faltermeyer. Not only has he had to put up with being told he is only a cheap imitation of John Carpenter but to have a Crazy Frog come along and drag your main hit kicking and screaming into the gutter would be hard for anyone to digest (I’m sure the royalties helped tho).
Long before that slightly unhinged frog came on the scene and overplayed an already overplayed Axel F to death, Harold Faltermeyer was taking over on the 80s synth soundtracks when Carpenter started to slow down.
Top Gun, Beverly Hills Cop and Tango & Cash all had his signature style, but The Running Man and its bleak dystopian setting was perfect for him to flex his muscles. The driving basslines and prominent leads on ‘Bakersfield’, ‘Main Title’, and ‘Mick’s Broadcast’ are all flawless examples of him getting that fine balance between hope and despair.
Turrican 2 – Chris Hülsbeck
What Chris Hülsbeck could do on an Amiga was just simply breath-taking. To the this day the three Turrican soundtracks have been so influential it’s really not surprising that there has been so many covers, remixes and even live symphonic versions of the albums. With each song constantly changing and taking you in directions you wonder (like the game) what lies ahead, but yet they are so damn catchy that you end up humming them to yourself days later.
Chris has just recently released newly updated arranged versions of the soundtracks on Bandcamp, which are stunning and highly recommended, but if I’m being honest I still love the original versions as they are in that raw state. Thankfully the good man knows his audience as he has them up on Bandcamp as well.
Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon – Power Glove
The perfect way to end this list. The Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon is everything mentioned above in this series, but with everything else from 80s squeezed in on top. The Terminator, Tron, Blade Runner the Power Glove guys were leaving nothing behind on this one. Everything about this score so perfect for the game, the mood it sets is just unreal. If you ever wanted to be in your own 80s VHS Cannon movie (and who doesn’t?) now is your chance.
Two things though have made me so happy that this was released. First up, whoever in Ubisoft marketing and design team who made the call on this and stood by it got it so bang on. Secondly, I am super delighted that the Power Glove guys got there break on this. When I heard their Night Force track a few years before this release I knew the guys from down under were only going to go on to bigger and better things.
So many thanks to Bocuma for this wonderful series. We’d love to know what you thought of it, please…let us know below!